English - Year 7

English Overview

Term 1 and 2: The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas

Pupils will read John Boyle’s ‘The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas’ to build on their reading and comprehension skills. The key focus here is on understanding plot, character, themes and language techniques from the novel. Pupils will also be building on the key skills of identifying, inferring, deducing and explaining. They will be taught to write in clear PEE (Point/ Evidence/ Explanation/Analysis) paragraphs, selecting suitable quotations from the text as supporting evidence to demonstrate their understanding of the textual content they have read. This will help build their confidence and competence in preparation for the Literature Key Task scheduled for the end of term.

  1. A thematic essay based on the first half of the novel.
Holocaust

the mass murder of Jewish people under the German Nazi regime during the period 1941–5. More than 6 million European Jews, as well as members of other persecuted groups, were murdered at concentration camps such as Auschwitz.

Nazi

a member of the National Socialist German Workers' Party. The party had extreme racist and authoritarian views.

Auschwitz

: Nazi Germany's largest concentration camp and extermination camp.

Protagonist

the leading character or one of the major characters in a play, film, novel etc.

Unreliable narrator

A narrator whose credibility is compromised.

Theme

A recurring idea

  • Spiritual
  • Moral
  • Social
  • Cultural
Develop the individual:

Students will learn about Literature from the 20th Century, and relevant contextual issues that arise from the reading. Students will discuss issues such as power, control, authority, law, violence, democracy and human behaviour, and the effect and impact of these issues on their own lives. They will be encouraged to use empathy in order to put themselves into a character's shoes. They will also work on discussion and debate, developing their confidence in spoken word as well as writing and reading.

Create a supportive community:

Students will be confident in sharing their own ideas. They will develop listening skills.

Term 1 and 2 : Science fiction and Dystopia

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In this unit we study a selection of dystopian short stories. Students are introduced to the genre and its features before focusing on the writers’ craft. Settings, ideas, themes, events and characters are all discussed in order to help students discover the building blocks of an engaging story. These elements are analysed through comprehension tasks and used as models for the students’ own pieces of dystopian imaginative writing.

  1. A reading response based on a short dystopian story.
Themes

The main ideas that recur in a story.

Character

A person, animal or figure represented in a piece of literature.

Setting

The location and time frame that a story takes place in.

Events

Something that happens in a story which moves on the thinking in a piece of writing.

Annotate

Add notes to a text and give explanations

Dystopia

An imagined state or society in which there is great suffering or injustice, typically one that is totalitarian or post-apocalyptic.

Utopia

An imagined place or state of things in which everything is perfect.

Society

The community of people living in a particular country or region and having shared customs, laws, and organizations.

Science Fiction

Fiction based on imagined future scientific or technological advances and major social or environmental changes

Genre

A style or category of art, music, or literature

Connotation

An idea or feeling which a word invokes for a person in addition to its literal or primary meaning.

Atmosphere

The pervading tone or mood of a place, situation, or creative work.

Analyse

Discover or reveal (something) through close examination, zooming in on particular words or phrases

  • Spiritual
  • Moral
  • Social
  • Cultural
Develop the individual:

Students will explore their ideas as they engage with different extracts. They will be able to develop their imagination and creativity through their own creative writing.

Create a supportive community:

Students will explore their ideas together, developing listening and appreciation skills.

Term 3 and 4: Selling The Experience

In this unit, the students learn how tourist attractions make themselves appealing to potential customers. They consider the features of leaflets, adverts and websites to promote places and experiences. The students then judge and compare promotional texts, to see which ones they think are most effective. This is all working towards using this knowledge to be able to promote their own tourist attractions which they will design.

  1. A reading response based on a promotional text
List

More than one idea connected by commas or semi colons.

Repetition

Saying the same word or idea more than once to create impact.

Rhetorical Question

Asking a question without requiring the reader to respond.

Opinions

A viewpoint, statement or belief.

Facts

Something that is proved true. Information used as evidence.

Statistics

Percentages, data and other numerical facts which can be used to prove an argument.

Purpose

The reason behind the text

Audience

The intended reader of the text, the type of person the writer wants to appeal to

USP

Unique selling point

  • Spiritual
  • Moral
  • Social
  • Cultural
Develop the individual:

Students will explore their ideas as they engage with different extracts. They will be able to develop their ideas through their own creation of a tourist attraction.

Create a supportive community:

Students will explore their ideas together, developing listening and appreciation skills.

Term 3 and 4: An Introduction to Shakespeare's Heroes and Villains

In this unit, students are introduced to three Shakespeare plays: ‘Hamlet,’ ‘Romeo and Juliet’ and ‘The Merchant of Venice.’ Following on from our previous work on big ideas, we will approach these plays focusing on setting, characters, themes and events. Students can expect to read, watch and perform key scenes from these plays. In this unit, students build on their understanding of Elizabethan England and improve their cultural capital. We promote enthusiasm whilst handling the daunting challenge of Shakespearean language through: performance-based lessons; study of key events and characters; debate. This will help build their confidence and competence in preparation for the Literature Key Task scheduled for the end of term.

  1. A character study on Shylock from ‘The Merchant of Venice’
Themes

The main ideas that recur in a story.

Character

A person, animal or figure represented in a piece of literature.

Setting

The location and time frame that a story takes place in.

Events

Something that happens in a story which moves on the thinking in a piece of writing.

Elizabethan

relating to something that happened during Queen Elizabeth’s reign

Protagonist

The main characters in a story

Antagonist

The character who directly opposes the protagonist

Context

The circumstances that form the setting for an event, statement, or idea, and in terms of which it can be fully understood.

Playwright

The writer of a play

Stage directions

an instruction in the text of a play indicating the movement, position, or tone of an actor, or the sound effects and lighting.

Tragic hero

A hero who is flawed and has a tragic downfall

Victim

Someone who is a person harmed, injured, or killed as a result of a crime, accident, or other event or action.

Villain

Someone whose evil actions or motives are important to the plot.

  • Spiritual
  • Moral
  • Social
  • Cultural
Develop the individual:

Students will have an opportunity to engage with this era from history and explore ideas about different beliefs and traditions from their own.

Create a supportive community:

Students will gain confidence performing and reciting Shakespeare's verse. Students will work together to develop ideas and interpretations.

Term 5 and 6: Ballads

Pupils will read and listen to a selection of ballads and narrative poetry. In this unit, students build on their understanding of storytelling. Students look at big ideas and themes in these poems and track the way that form and storytelling have changed over the years. We encourage exploration and curiosity about poetry whilst considering the sometimes daunting challenge of rhyme, rhythm and meaning through: performance-based lessons; study of key techniques and themes; discussion and group annotation. Students will also have opportunities to write their own poetry. This will help build their confidence and competence in preparation for the Literature Key Tasks scheduled this term.

  1. A selection of comprehension and analytical questions on a ballad.

    Writing a ballad based on a newspaper story

Simile

Comparing one thing with another thing which it is not using like or as.

Metaphor

A word or phrase applied to something that it is not. Saying something is something else.

Alliteration

When more than one word in sequence starts with the same letter.

Verb

A doing word.

Repetition

Saying the same word or idea more than once to create impact.

Rhetorical Question

Asking a question without requiring the reader to respond.

Tone

the general character or attitude of a place, piece of writing, situation, etc.

Narrative

a spoken or written account of connected events; a story.

Connotations

an idea or feeling which a word invokes for a person in addition to its literal or primary meaning.

  • Spiritual
  • Moral
  • Social
  • Cultural
Develop the individual:

Students will consider the importance of their own experiences and how to express this. Also they will read about lives that are different from their own.

Create a supportive community:

Students will engage with a number of texts that will help to develop their ability to identify, explain and analyse. Also they will learn how to debate, taking into consideration other student's points of view.

Term 5 and 6 : Biographies

This term, Year 7 are learning how biographies tell us about inspirational people. They will consider the features of biographies and the events which make these individuals inspiring. They will then judge and compare biographies, considering how effective they are at informing the reader about how inspirational these individuals are. This is all working towards using this knowledge to be able to write their own biographies and to express views on what makes someone a worthy role model.

  1. Comparative paragraphs
Point

The theme/technique/ word which your quote proves. P from PEE.

Evidence

The quote. PEE.

Explanation

How does your point and evidence answer the question. PEE

Simile

Comparing one thing with another thing which it is not using like or as.

Metaphor

A word or phrase applied to something that it is not. Saying something is something else.

Alliteration

When more than one word in sequence starts with the same letter.

Hyperbole

Excessive exaggeration.

5 Senses

Using imagery that describes: Sight Smell Hearing Touch Taste

Adjective

A describing word.

Dialogue

A conversation between two characters, using speech marks.

Verb

A doing word.

Personification

Applying human characteristics to non human objects.

List

More than one idea connected by commas or semi colons.

Punctuation

Using a variety of punctuation to enhance a piece of writing. For example using: . , ; : - ? ! " ()

Repetition

Saying the same word or idea more than once to create impact.

Rhetorical Question

Asking a question without requiring the listener to respond.

Assonance

Close repetition of vowel sounds.

Caesura

A full stop in the middle of a line, to create impact at the pause.

Couplet

Stanza of 2 lines or pair of lines, often rhyming.

Enjambment

Continuation of a sentence across more than one line, noticeable by the lack of punctuation at the end of a line.

Epigraph

A short note or verse from another text, placed at the beginning of the poem.

Line

A line of the poem which forms part of a stanza.

Meter

The rhythm of a line.

Refrain

A repeated line within the poem.

Rhyme

Words that sound alike, especially words that end in the same sound.

Rhythm

The beat of the poem.

Stanza

Group of lines in a poem.

Onomatopoeia

Words that sound like the noise they are describing.

  • Spiritual
  • Moral
  • Social
  • Cultural
Develop the individual:

Students will consider a range of poetic forms, devices and styles from across the world. They will learn how to approach an unseen poem, focusing on language, form and structure, which will in turn feed into their GCSE study. Students will be asked to use empathy skills in order to appreciate the context of the poems they read.

Create a supportive community:

Students will explore ideas and feelings, building on one anothers' ideas and listening to each other. Students will be asked to recognise positive contributions in order to foster a great atmosphere for debate.